HomeNewsDiamond saga: new evidence emerge

Diamond saga: new evidence emerge

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Former Secretary for Mines and Mining Development Thankful Musukutwa yesterday told the High court that his interaction with Core Mining director Lovemore Kurotwi and former Zimbabwe Mining Development Co-operation (ZMDC) chief executive officer Dominic Mubaiwa was above board.

He also said together with Kurotwi and Mubayiwa they made presentations which led to the country’s diamonds certified by Kimberley Processing Certification Scheme (KPCS) in Namibia. Kurotwi and Mubayiwa are facing charges of potentially prejudicing government of an investment worth $2 billion.

Musukutwa, who is now Secretary for Special Affairs in the Office of the President, told Justice Chinembiri Bhunu he had known Kurotwi since 2006 when the latter introduced him to Israeli billionaire Beny Steinmetz who owns BSGR to the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe.

“When I left the ministry in July last year all was well, and on my part I cannot say there was any wrong doing by the two men and I worked well with them,” he said.

“Core was doing very well that is why we went together to Namibia and after their presentations together with others Zimbabwe became certified and admitted by the (KPCS).”

Musukutwa told the court that Core Mining brought into the country equipment which was commissioned by Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara, Mines minister Obert Mpofu, Energy minister Elton Mangoma and Defence minister Emmerson Mnangagwa among other high-ranking government officials. After his evidence-in-chief, Musukutwa was cross-examined by Kurotwi and Mubayiwa’s lawyers Beatrice Mtetwa and Advocate Louis Uriri respectively, who asked him whether he had knowledge of the procedures used in the ministry to engage investors.

“I would not say whether there was as such. In the current case, ZMDC board would negotiate with the minister (Mpofu) and I would simply see people going to the minister,” Musukutwa said.
Asked if he had set up a committee that would sit and select investors Musukutwa said: “We tried in 2009, but that did not work, I do not know why it failed (but) that’s what happened, it just failed.”
The matter was postponed to July 23. Chris Mutangadura and Public Mpofu represented the State.

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